About the course

Character Design is coming to Escape Studios!

Our brand new course starting in October is an 8 week classroom introduction to the art and craft of character design. As with most of our evening classes, this is a part-time course, designed to fit around jobs and families, taught by industry professionals.

Character Design is one of the most rewarding parts of our industry - and also one of the most competitive. As with everything we do here at Escape, the class will build up to a live industry brief, with the final project mapping as closely as possible to the experience of working in an industry environment.

Students will attend an evening class one night a week, and will be set simple projects to do in-class, and  more complex ones to complete by the following week.

There will also be an 8 week period of online mentoring and aftercare, in which students can polish their skills in a virtual classroom and receive ongoing feedback and support.

The course has been designed after consultation with industry, with individual classes being delivered by character designers working in the animation industry, such as the very talented Vince Woodcock, author of How to Draw and Paint Crazy Cartoon Characters: Create Original Characters with Lots of Personality.  Vince was a character designer on animated hits such as Space Jam and the Tigger Movie.

Below is some more detailed information on how the course is likely to break down:

Part One - Introduction to Character Design

  • Week 1 - General Introduction to Design
    Introductory Exercises. Creativity, ideas and inspiration for stories. Gesture drawing, fast sketches, and research. 
  • Week 2 - Creating designs which have character.
    Single images that illustrate personality and character. Design drawings. Situations and character-driven scenarios.

  • Week 3 - Industry character design process.
    A close look at the work of some leading character designers and how they work.

  • Week 4 - Art Direction.
    Introduction to the principles of design and visual development.

Part Two - Character Design Technique

  • Week 5 - Designing animal characters.
    How to base designs on real life. Animal anatomy, Staging and character

  • Week 6 - Designing human characters.
    Life drawing, human anatomy, gesture drawing and character poses.

  • Week 7 - Character Situations
    The interaction of character with story. How do our characters fit into the overall story?

  • Week 8 - Model Packs, Turnarounds, Blend Shapes and Rigging Studies for CG.

Part Three - Online Mentoring and AfterCare

Online mentoring and aftercare will continue for a further 8 weeks. Students will be set a series of projects for delivery, using a Facebook Group as an online virtual classroom. Tutors will provide online mentoring and individual feedback.

Recommended reading

Course summary

    Escape Studios West
    23 October 2017
    Part time (Monday Evening: 7pm - 10pm)
    8 weeks
    Aged 18 or over, a good understanding of written and spoken English

Meet your tutor

Vincent Woodcock
Animation Tutor